Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Moussaoui jury reject death penalty

' Al-Qaeda plotter' Zacarias Moussaoui is to face life in jail, rather than execution, for his role in the 9/11 attacks, a US jury has decided. The prosecution had called for the death sentence, arguing that "there is no place on this good Earth" for him.

But defence lawyers successfully argued he should face life in prison, rather than martyrdom through execution. The judge is bound to hand down the jail sentence. Moussaoui is the only man prosecuted in the US over 9/11. Although he was in jail at the time of the attacks, prosecutors claimed he told lies to allow the plot to continue.

Crazy Terrorist or simply mentally ill ?

CNN senior legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin offered his immediate anylasis of the verdict

"His connection to the attacks is -- it's not zero, as the jury found -- but it's not that strong. And the thing that got him convicted or got him to this stage -- he pleaded guilty -- is his insane, self-defeating testimony that may have been some sort of bid for martyrdom.But the actual evidence that the government presented was really not that strong."

"One interpretation of that is that he's simply crazy. Another interpretation is that he is simply an al Qaeda soldier who wants to see Americans die and he's acting perfectly rationally. This is one of the issues very much in front of the jury."


Blogger Hype said...

Good. I don't think the death penalty is right. (Wasn't he in jail when 9/11 happened?)


May 04, 2006 12:14 am  
Blogger _H_ said...

Yup He was arrested about a month before 9/11 . Its a bit dificult to actually work out what he is serving time for. He didnt actually commit any crime . He just spoke about wanting to commit a crime ... in short he is in jail for thinking of doing something evil (thought crime for those that read orwell)

I am not defending him , He probably would have tried to do something given the chance but considering he is the ONLY person prosecuted for 9/11 the case against him was very lame.

If all those that thought about killing people were jailed for life we would surely need a lot of jails ....

I am no expert on Moussaoui but from what I have seen he does deserve to be locked up for life Just not in a prison but in a mental hospital.

May 04, 2006 1:13 pm  
Anonymous JMN said...

The views of Moussauoi stem from genuine grieviences. His political and relgious beliefs are legitimate and his right. A terrorist is defined by his choice of tactic, not his objectives.

If it was found that Mousssauoi was part of a plot, then yes he should be under control - but not for life. In my view, he was locked up because of his political views. Locking him up for a few years and then deporting him to France would not have been an option.

Locking Moussauoi up may deal with him, but it does little in the long run. His views are shared by millions around the globe. Those views are not confined to militants, Muslims or 'terrorists'. 'al Qaeda' (I use the term with caution) represents the extreme end of a spectrum that is not confined to any particular race, nationality or religion.

Those grieviences stem from opposition to American policies, and reinforced by past-American associated atrocities. America needs to adress those issues through modifiying its foreign policy - not necessarily support for Israel, but support for Arab nationalists, dictators, militaries and secret police throughout the world.

If America does not address these issues, it will suffer physically, politically and economically.

There is an important point that a vast majority of people do not recogise. Militancy is merely the extreme finge of a process. The grieviences shared by militants are not confined to militants, and are not confined to Muslims or Arabs. Those grieviences are shared throughout the world, including milions of Americans.

The need to address US policy issues is necessary. The Project for the New American Century (PNAC) - which includes Cheney, Rumsfield, Wolfwowitz and Jeb Bush as signatories - is a concern for the world, not a solution to the world problems. The US can not gain the legitimacy it needs to continue to exploit is hegemonic status. Fukayama does not address this issue of legitimacy sufficiently in his book 'After the Necons.'

In my personal view, American foreign policy is lost between the neoconservatives, the realists and isolationists. After the debacle of Iraq, the White House will only address military and defensive issues. It will do little to ask why it lacks legitmacy in the world. The belief that the 'symptoms' can only be dealt with, and not the disease, is deeply problematic.

To take the view that the US can become politically, economically and physically secure thorugh its current methods is deeply problematic.

My point is, that if the US does not address real grieviences towards its foreign policies, it may be faced with millions of Moussaoui's in the future. But they will be invisible and will only exist on economic charts. Terrorism will no longer be the method of choice, but economic, political and social opposition to the United States.

But, under the current government, as long as the idea is sold that 'terrorists' and 'evil-doers' can be controlled through bombs and bullets, walls and bars, the true grieviences will not be addressed - grieviences which effect millions around the globe. Moussauoi being merely one.

May 07, 2006 4:10 am  
Blogger _H_ said...

Excellent comment JMN

Thank you for taking the time to bring your thoughts to this forum

May 07, 2006 4:15 am  
Blogger Hype said...

'economic, political and social opposition to the United States.'

and the right shoots the messenger, you know the left.. we said this will not help us in the long run.. they said you lost, go back to your corner.


May 08, 2006 10:14 pm  

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